Findings from the Illinois Kids Count 2013 report will be presented during a community event to be held at 10 a.m. on Feb 14 at the Joliet Public Library located at 150 N. Ottawa Street in Joliet.
The Illinois Kids Count 2013 report—“Moving Policy, Moving Progress”—focuses on achievements and challenges in early childhood education, health care coverage, access to child care services, and other policy areas. The findings underline several major challenges that Illinois must address to ensure a better future for children and families, including the ongoing state fiscal crisis, disturbing trends in child poverty, persistent racial-ethnic disparities in child well-being, and the traumatic impact of children's exposure to violence.
The report calls for a renewed commitment to investing in opportunities for children. Educational leaders, community advocates and policy makers will be present to explain findings and to answer questions. R. Dale Evans, Housing Authority of Joliet, will moderate a panel of speakers which include Shawn Walsh, Assistant Regional Superintendent for the Will County Regional Office of Education; Christine Bzdon, Executive Director, and Amy Emerson, Director of Family Services, at Childcare Resource and Referral; and Mark McHugh, Executive Director at One Hope United.
“This event brings people together who care about our kids and community,” said Evans. “It is an opportunity to shine light upon the issues and challenges that our families are facing and to support policies that address these issues.”